Trees are usually the foundation of any landscape design and their value cannot be emphasized enough. In addition to beautifying our landscape, they provide focal points in the design, shade for the property, energy savings, habitat for birds and wildlife and can increase the value of your property.
In addition to these important roles, trees are also the largest, slowest growing and most expensive plant material in your landscape and as such need to be cared for properly to maintain their health and well-being. Especially during the heat of summer.
As water resources continue to be restricted, many of us have been forced to prioritize what plant material receives it and what material is allowed to dry out and die. With trees being expensive and slow growing, you should make sure they receive as much of the available water as possible. Lawns can be established and rooted in a manner of weeks, but trees can take years to reach maturity.
- Properly prune your trees – proper pruning techniques will reduce the canopy of a tree without adding stress.
- Thinning the canopy of a tree reduces the drag caused by wind and will help prevent wind damage and broken limbs
- Clear away shrubs and brush under trees –
- Eliminating the competition for resources will allow the tree to obtain as much nourishment and moisture from the soil as is available
- Mulch around the tree – adding mulch will help the soil retain as much moisture as possible and helps reduce moisture loss through evaporation
- The mulch should be three inches deep but should not touch the trunk of the tree or the root collar or root flares.
- Water deeply and slowly – prevent lost water through excessive run-off
- Rule of thumb is 10 gallons of water per inch of trunk diameter per watering
- Water in the evening, at night or early morning – watering during the heat of the day promotes evaporation